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I’m So Glad I Jumped in! —Ezekiel 47:1-12

Today’s Scripture Reading:  Ezekiel 47:1 through Ezekiel 48:35;Ezekiel 29:17 through Ezekiel 30:19; 2 Kings 25:27-30; Jeremiah 52:31-34

Eleven years ago Harry and I went to Glacier National Park in Montana for our honeymoon.  It was so beautiful there.  My favorite part of the trip was whitewater rafting.  It was July and the weather was exceptionally warm, but the water was very cold.  Our guide told us that the water was so cold from the melting glaciers that hyperthermia could become a concern after just a few minutes in the water.

There were eight of us in the raft.  The guide came to an area where the waters were calm and said “if you would like to get in, now’s the time.”  I am very cold-natured so I had no plans to get in the water, but one-by-one each of our raft-mates jumped in; so I had to join the party.  Yes, it was cold, but it was so much fun!  I’m so glad I jumped in and didn’t just wish I had.

In Ezekiel 47:1-12, Ezekiel shares a vision of a river of healing.  In his vision a stream began to flow from the door of the Temple in Jerusalem.  Ezekiel followed a man as he led him down the stream.  In the beginning the water was only ankle-deep.  As they moved down the stream the water began to get higher— knee deep, then waist deep, then too deep to walk across.

Eventually the river reached the Dead Sea.

The Dead Sea is the lowest body of water on earth, and the lowest point on earth.  As its name evokes, the Dead Sea is devoid of life due to an extremely high content of salts and minerals.

In Ezekiel’s vision the stream made the salty waters of the Dead Sea fresh and pure; trees began to grow, swarms of living things and fish were in abundance, everywhere the water from this river stream flowed death was replaced by life.

Most interpreters agree that this “river of healing” represents the salvation message of Christ, which went forth from Jerusalem and spread throughout the world.  (Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Whole Bible)

I’m so glad I jumped in Christ’s river of healing and now have the assurance of eternal life with Him.  But I wonder, if sometimes we are just ankle-deep in our relationship with Christ; committed enough to accept Christ as Savior but not producing the fruit of a life connected to the ultimate life source.

Maybe we should ceremonially baptize every area of our life in Jesus Christ’s River of Healing:

  • Our heart
  • Our soul
  • Our mind
  • Our body
  • Our fears
  • Our treasures
  • Our strengths
  • Our weaknesses

Friends, heaven is going to be great but God made a way through His Son Jesus Christ for us to live a victorious life from the moment of salvation;

if

we allow Him to be our Lord, to be in control and in charge.

 

I encourage you to go deeper in Him; jump in, let the healing power of Jesus Christ get in you and not just on you.  Don’t settle, grab everything God has for you—You’ll be so glad you did!

 

Heavenly Father, I want all that You have for me!  Cover me from head to toe in Your Presence!  Help me to daily “jump in” to the life You have planned for me.

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

 

 

© 2012 Dianne Guthmuller

Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading:  Daniel 7:1 through Daniel 8:27; Daniel 5:1-31

When People Don’t Make Sense—Ezekiel 33:11

Today’s Scripture Reading:  Ezekiel 32:17 through Ezekiel 33:20; Jeremiah 52:28-30, Psalm 137; 1 Chronicles 4:24 through 1 Chronicles 5:17

We’ve all heard it said, maybe we’ve said it ourselves; maybe we’ve read a book about it

Sometimes, God doesn’t make sense. 

Premature death, hunger, sickness, suffering, orphans; it breaks our heart and causes us to ask “why.”

I wonder if God ever says, “People just don’t make sense.”

Yes, He made us and gave us the ability to choose.  And yes, He knows and understands our humanness, but He must get frustrated with us; frustrated with our choices.

In Ezekiel 33:11, we see one of those times when God must have said to Himself as he shook His head…  people just don’t make sense:

As surely as I live, says the Sovereign Lord, I take no pleasure in the death of wicked people. I only want them to turn from their wicked ways so they can live. Turn! Turn from your wickedness, O people of Israel! Why should you die?

This scripture verse reveals the heart of God…the heart of a father.

Can you hear the Lord’s sadness over the senseless death of the wicked?

He’s pleading with them through the prophet Ezekiel to turn from their wicked ways.

As a parent, it’s terribly frustrating to sit by and watch my children make a choice that I know will hurt them in the end.  How much more frustrating must it be for God, after all He knows what the results of our decisions before we make them.

I’m sure people don’t make sense to God when…

  • We choose death over eternal life
  • When we choose to talk to everyone else but the God of the Universe
  • When we choose to spend time staring into a T.V. or computer screen instead of reading His love letters to us
  • We abuse the bodies He gave us
  • We give more of ourselves to our jobs than the people we love
  • We choose to keep our Savior a secret
  • We choose to ignore His commandments

Friends, God has given us the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses.  God is watching anxiously to see which choice we make.  Let’s choose life today so that we and our descendants might live (Deuteronomy 30:19).

Heavenly Father, we know we do many things that just don’t make sense. Please forgive us when we choose the world and its enticements instead of You and the things that hold eternal significance.  Holy Spirit draw us to you.  Jesus, make us more like you.

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

 

© 2012 Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading:  1 Chronicles 5:18-26, 1 Chronicles 6:3b, 1 Chronicles 6:4-15, Chronicles 7:1- 8:28

4 Things to Do When You Come to a Crossroad–Jeremiah 6:16

Today’s Scripture Reading: Jeremiah 5:20-6:30; 2 Kings 22:3-20; 2 Chronicles 34:8-28

Have you seen the movie Castaway?  Harry and I love it!  It was our first date.  Just imagine…two forty-somethings going on a first date with their two 17 year olds in the back seat!  Hilarious!

Anyway, enough of about that.  There’s a scene at the end of the movie where Tom Hanks is standing in the middle of two roads crossing.  He has four choices: East, West, North, South.  It was a big decision.  He had to decide.

In today’s reading our Heavenly Father gave us some advice for the crossroads in our lives:

This is what the Lord says:

“Stop at the crossroads and look around.

Ask for the old, godly way, and walk in it.

Travel its path, and you will find rest for your souls.

But you reply, ‘No, that’s not the road we want!’  –Jeremiah 6:16-21

Pretty straightforward…

  1. Stop
  2. Look around
  3. Ask for the old, godly way
  4. Walk in it

I don’t know about you, but I’ve skipped all four of those steps too many times.  I was the one saying, “No, that’s not the road I want.” Oh, that I would have always asked for the old, godly way and walked in it. It would have saved me a lot of pain and heartache.

Thankfully, God has had a way of getting me back on track.  His grace and mercy is amazing!

Friends, today’ a new day.  Let’s determine our “crossroads plan” BEFORE we get to the crossroads.

Let’s promise to

–Make no hasty decisions

–Look around and get a good understanding of what’s really going on

–Seek godly advice, go to God’s Word

–Take the godly way

Heavenly Father, thank You for Your Word.  Thank You for leading us (Proverbs 3:5-6).  Give us wisdom to follow your crossroads instructions.  Use us for Your Glory!

In Jesus’ Name.  Amen and Amen!

 

© 2012 Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: 2 Kings 23:1-20; 2 Chronicles 34:29-33; 2 Kings 23:21-28; 2 Chronicles 35:1-19; Naham 1:1-3:19

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